Diabetes and eye disease: How diabetes affects vision and eye health
One of the complications associated with diabetes is eye disease. Diabetes can wreak havoc on your vision and eye health, in some cases leading to vision loss. If you have diabetes, it’s important that you keep your condition well managed. If you don’t, you should take the necessary preventative measures to reduce your risk and protect your vision along with overall health.
Regardless of the type, diabetics have a 25 percent higher risk of vision loss, compared to the general population without diabetes. In diabetes, your body cannot store sugar properly. This fluctuation in blood sugar levels can damage your blood vessels, especially those that supply blood to your eyes. As a result, diabetes means an increased risk for eye complications, including cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy.
Diabetes-related eye diseases
Diabetic retinopathy: High blood sugar levels can damage blood vessels. Too much sugar can also cause blockages to the blood vessels in the retina, obstructing the flow of oxygenated blood. The new blood vessels that are being produced do not develop properly, so they leak.
There are two types of diabetic retinopathy: early diabetic retinopathy and advanced diabetic retinopathy.
Early diabetic retinopathy: In this form of diabetic retinopathy, new blood vessels are not produced. The walls of the blood vessels going to the retina become weak and tiny bulges begin to protrude. This can cause blood and fluid to leak into the retina. Large blood vessels can also assume an irregular diameter, and more blood vessels become blocked.
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